“Waste not want not” was a familiar saying in my household growing up! Usually recited by my mother and always told when we were about to waste something! Whether it was food, electricity by leaving the lights or the TV on, or just wasting time she would recite that saying quite often to us seven kids. I often wondered where that saying came from when I was a child but with no internet I had no way of knowing except to look it up in our encyclopedias or the dictionary (the “internet” in our day) and I never found it. That was the case in a lot of sayings back then I suppose.
Like most children the saying went in one ear and out the other (another saying used a lot!)
So fast forward to today and with the internet you can look up that saying and guess what? I did!
According to idioms.thefreedictionary.com the saying “waste not want not” means the wise use of one’s resources will keep one from poverty and was said to be quoted by Benjamin Franklin around 1772. However it had an earlier even more alliterative version which was “Willful waste makes woeful want” which was first recorded around 1576.
This saying throughout the years has really stuck with me and I find myself repeating it a lot and it has become a mantra of sorts here at Little Bend. To illustrate this I want to talk about the last weekend that we just had at Little Bend.
As you know at Little Bend we raise Bourbon Red Heritage turkeys and since breeding season is over we did not need all of the Tom turkeys and some of the hens since we will not take them into next spring for various reasons. So we decided to go ahead and butcher 14 of them. Now normally we take the turkeys to a USDA processing facility but since it was such a small amount to be butchered and it is good to stay in practice plus with the mantra of waste not want not I found it was better to save the money and do them ourselves.
So we butchered them knowing that we were going to process them for turkey burger since 14 turkeys in the freezer is a lot to store and knowing that we would not eat 14 whole turkeys very quickly I did not want to waste electricity freezing them whole.
So we started out the day after having unthawed the turkeys overnight with a fresh cup of coffee and freshly sharpened knives.The total weight of all the 14 turkeys equalled 140 pounds. Generally, you will get about 50% meat after removing the skin and bones.
Now here at Little Bend we do not like to waste anything so we decided along with grinding some turkey burger we might as well make turkey stock with the bones and the small scraps of meat.
So we set up the stockpot to make the turkey broth. Now in our turkey broth sometimes we like to put some vegetables and spices so that we get a different broth for cooking different foods and we decided to do that in this case.
However; we did not want to freeze our turkey broth being it is summer and we did not want to run the freezers.
So the logical thing was to can the turkey broth. But then I got to thinking if we were going to can the broth we would need to have the pressure canner going and if we are going to do that we might as well can some turkey meat instead of grinding it all into turkey burger and again save some space in the freezer! That way we can have some turkey meat for stews or soups later on.
But then that further lead me to think if we’re going to make turkey stock with vegetables and seasonings I certainly did not want to throw the leftover vegetables away! So that got me to thinking why not make turkey soup with the leftovers vegetables and broth!
So we had our game plan we would take 14 turkeys and make turkey hamburger, canned turkey meat, turkey broth, and finally turkey soup! I have gone ahead and shot some video of the whole process and I hope to post that on the blog shortly after I edit it for everyone. But for now I hope the pictures we took of the operation will work and I will post the videos showing more detail later.
Lastly, just to finish out this blog I will tell you that we ground over 50 pounds of turkey burger, we canned about 20 pounds of turkey meat, and we also canned 7 quarts of turkey broth, and made a very large pot of turkey barley soup to have for supper after our day! To be honest it only took about 5 hours from start to finish.
I hope this blog shows everyone that with a little creative thinking we can all use our resources to the best of our ability and I believe by remembering the saying “Waste not want not” my mother would be proud!
Until next time “God Bless friends and we’ll Gobble at ya later!”